University building and grounds, in the mountains near Ashville
Black Mountain College was the leading institution for interdisciplinary artistic education in the late 1940s. Classes included fine arts, architecture, theatre, economics, physics and history. Among the teachers at Black Mountain College were many of America's leading artists, poets and designers, as well as numerous emigrants from Germany (including Anni and Josef Albers), who came to Black Mountain College from the Bauhaus after it was closed by the National Socialists. The students were taught and lived on an equal footing between empiricism and experimentation. Students were obliged to take on tasks from all areas of life, had access to all institutional levels of the college and decided for themselves when they graduated. There were no concrete performance records, official grade assignments or regular study periods.
Establish a democratic and, in the spirit of the reform pedagogical ideas of the philosopher John Dewey, experience-based, interdisciplinary teaching institute.
Holistic teaching and learning as a performative process that connects life and art and promotes free thinking (John A. Rice: »observation - judgment - action«)
Potential was discovered and promoted through joint work and experimentation. Pupils and teachers organised lessons and everyday life independently and democratically.
The nucleus for the work of many important artists.
Precursor to many alternative colleges in America.
John Andrew Rice, Theodore Dreier, Frederick Georgia and Ralph Lounsbury
Drawing of planned campus building overlooking Eden Lake at Black Mountain College in Asheville, North Carolina (1938) Architectural design by Marcel Breuer and Walter Gropius (artist anonymous) Photograph with collage, ink, and gouache, on woven paper. Photo: Scanned from exhibit at Harvard Art Museums. Source: Wikipedia